Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP - The Inside View

Looking for a firm where you can be a self-starter and keep sampling practices for your first three years as an associate? It’s a Dunn deal at this premium BigLaw powerhouse. 

Complete your bachelor’s degree. Sit the LSAT. Enroll in law school. Sit the Bar exam. Find yourself a law firm. Choose a specific practice area. This is the standard path to becoming a lawyer in the US, but Gibson Dunn offers its newbies a broader route once they’re through the door: “We have a free-market staffing system that encourages our attorneys to take an active lead in their professional development,” firm chair and managing partner Barbara Becker explains. “The free market is so pivotal to our workflow and culture that I couldn’t imagine what the firm would look like without it,” an associate added. “It’s a great place to be if you want to try your hand at anything.” 

“Gibson practices at the highest level and has a broad client base in a number of industries.” 

To clarify: associates can choose to be ‘unassigned’ for their first two years. After this, juniors tend to specialize within one of the firm’s highly regarded practice areas; our colleagues at Chambers USAhand out a whole smattering of top-tier accolades in among the firm’s 80+ rankings, which includes praise for Gibson’s antitrust, appellate, corporate crime/investigations, product liability,and securities practices. The firm has become synonymous with powerhouse litigation and appellate work, notably in its home state of California, as well as in New Yorkand DC. Its transactional practices are also highly regarded, with rankings handed out to Gibson’s M&A, energy and real estate teams. “Gibson practices at the highest level and has a broad client base in a number of industries,” one source said. “I was really attracted to the broader, more sophisticated practices and the higher caliber of employees.” 

Strategy & Future 



Barbara Becker was appointed firm chair and managing partner in 2021. “I was honored to be elected,” she says. “Our strategy is, and always has been, to cultivate the best talent, tackle the most cutting-edge legal issues, and achieve excellent results for our clients.” For Becker, those principles “will continue to guide Gibson Dunn in 2022 and beyond, and I anticipate that great things lie ahead as a result.” And as one associate pointed out, “we don’t grow too fast or overextend. I feel very secure when it comes to the outlook of the business.”  

The Work 



Gibson was founded in LA, but New York takes the crown as the firm’s largest office. The firm has eight other bases across the US, with a further ten offices strategically positioned across all major global legal centers. All of Gibson’s bases are growing, Becker tells us, as she reflects on developments that occurred over the course of 2021: “The London transactional platform grew with the addition of a fantastic private equity M&A team,” she says. “Our Hong Kong office, likewise, welcomed a team of regulatory attorneys, building on the firm’s prior expansions in Asia.”  

“Being able to pick from any practice group is fantastic.” 

Most of the associates on our list were based in the Big Apple, but Gibson’s DC and LA offices also held a significant number. The rest of the juniors were fairly evenly spread between the Orange County, San Francisco, Dallas, Houston, and Denver bases. Across the classes, nearly a third of all associates were ‘unassigned.’ Litigation absorbed a large chunk of the associates, but juniors had also settled into Gibson’s corporate,real estate, andtax departments. For the unassigned, “being able to pick from any practice group is fantastic,” one source told us. “You specialize as you go of course, but I’ve had such variety already. Exploring the full size of a law firm is great, and to accept such different projects has been so beneficial.”  

The free-market system means there are no formal staffing procedures in placeand getting assignments is all about“building relationships and getting to know people.” Most sources celebrated this setup. “The system works for me,” one source said. “I trust myself to be a bit of a go-getter and I’m willing to ask for work. I like that I can chart my own path and trajectory rather than being at the whim of an assigning partner.” Another interviewee added: “You have control over what work you can take on, which is empowering.” One junior did highlight that judging how many assignments to take on can take some practice: “It can be difficult to manage your time initially and you can become overworked and under pressure, but there are resources and Gibson is aware and provides a means to check in.” 

“I trust myself to be a bit of a go-getter and I’m willing to ask for work.” 

“Our litigation team continues to be a powerhouse and has achieved incredible results for our clients,” says Becker. General commercial, antitrust, appellate and white-collar cases are all dealt with here (among other specialisms). The department regularly handles headline-dominating work for household-name clients, with its flagship appellate practice frequently tackling major cases in the Supreme Court. Gibson attorneys also work on high stakes,bet-the-company white-collar investigations, with a key area reportedly being its ability to handle data privacy and security matters. “If you want first-rate litigation work in LA,” one associate said, “there really is no option beyond Gibson Dunn.” Across California, the firm scoops five top-end Chambers USA rankings for its litigation practices; it is also positioned in the elite category for its general commercial litigation work across California, New York and DC. 

Sources we interviewed had worked on a whole range of cases: white-collar and cartel investigations, entertainment matters, insurance claims, trade secrets cases, contracts disputes, assault liability charges and more. Given this scope, junior responsibilities varied depending on the size and type of matter. Some sources described a clearer “hierarchy” on certain cases, which meant working on “paralegal-type tasks” such as document review or “random minutia organizational stuff.” Others felt they had the chance to really get stuck in: “I recall being surprised that it didn’t seem to matter what year you were,” one source found. “If you raise your hand, you get the work. I was drafting two months after joining.” Naturally, juniors aren’t “first-chairing depositions, but I will be second-chairing and doing all the work behind the scenes,” an interviewee highlighted. Ultimately, being on a “leanly staffed team means you can take on more.” One such patent litigation matter saw a junior “doing stuff that mid-levels do!” Brief writing, second-chairing depositions, creating exhibition lists, and gaining pre-trial exposure meant they were “very involved!” 

Litigation clients: Facebook, Netflix, Toyota. Gibson attorneys secured a famous victory on behalf of Apple against Epic Games’ antitrust claim. 

Associates can sample M&A, capital markets, private equity, bankruptcy and venture capital matters across the firm’s corporate department. “It’s very fluid,” one source noted. “I’m going into my third year and just starting to think about where I want to specialize.” No matter the specialism, Gibson serves a “who’s who of corporate America,” with the firm’s M&A team in New York also considered a part of the elite category by Chambers USA. As with litigation, exposure and responsibility is often deal or practice dependent. “There’s a wide range of work available and there are definitely some partners who are really good at giving you hands-on responsibility at an early junior level,” an interviewee said. One deal for a large private equity client involved “communicating with individuals at various funds before drafting documents and negotiating back and forth to gain consent to transfer.” Client contact was to be found on smaller M&A deals. “Some diligence assignments involve being sat at the computer doing more repetitive work, but I am happy overall,” one source confirmed. “Within six months a partner had brought me to a client meeting, which was really good.” 

Corporate clients: Merck & Co, PepsiCo, General Electric. The firm advised the Special Committee of the VMware Board of Directors on Dell Technologies’ planned VMware spin-off in a deal the WSJ values at $52 billion. 

Real estate work at Gibson covers the likes of related M&A deals, financing transactions, and a dedicated zoning and land use team in California. Clients here include lenders, developers, operators, and investment firms. The firm picks up multiple top-tier rankings for all permutations of real estate work across the US, especially in the Golden State, where the group boasts a niche in matters tied to major stadiums and arenas. Our survey respondents in this group overwhelmingly agreed they had good levels of responsibility and client contact. 

Real estate clients: Stockbridge Real Estate Funds, Blackstone, Rockpoint. Advised Stockbridge on its approx. $2 billion acquisition of a portfolio of 23 warehouses. 

Career Development 



Mixed opinions emerged regarding training at the firm. For some, “formalized training seems nonexistent,” with guidance being “dependent on the specific senior attorney you’re working with.” This lack of training was attributed to the pandemic by a few sources. “They usually have this big retreat in California where you go through lots of training together,” said one associate. “But it went online and it’s just really hard to engage people for a long time in that format.” However, juniors did highlight the extent of informal training and feedback on offer. “I like that things are pretty informal,” one said. “I know what I need to do to improve and there’s lots of informal mentorship available.” Moreover, the firm has since reinstated in-person training in the form of the New Lawyer Academy, a three-day event which puts on various seminars and offers juniors the chance to connect with colleagues from around the world.

“Spoon-feeding isn’t on the menu here and I don’t have any complaints.” 

Ultimately, as one junior mused, “people are receptive and willing to help. Questions come up and questions get answered, but it’s about asking for help when needed. Spoon-feeding isn’t on the menu here and I don’t have any complaints.” While “there’s not a ton of clarity on the milestones that you need to hit” to make partner, sources still considered it an attainable option if that’s the goal. One source summarized the approach at the junior end: “Gibson treats its associates differently and they don’t try to pressurize you while you’re finding your feet. It’s about getting to mid-level before considering making partner.” 

Hours & Compensation 



Billable hours: no requirement 

Gibson associates have no official billing target, although we’re told that hitting 1,950 hours per year is roughly the aim. Some sources felt that their “work/life balance had been tough to maintain” against the circumstances created by the pandemic, whereas others told us the balance was “good and dependent on what you make of it… and a certain amount of luck!” Another added: “I think I do a lot of hours, but that’s just BigLaw.” Encouragingly, “the associate committees and panels say over and over that we shouldn’t be afraid to say no to more work and that the partners get it – if you’re busy just say no and stop taking stuff!” Data from our survey shows the average number of hours worked per associate in the previous week stood at 54 hours – just over the market average in 2021 of 53.8 hours.  

“...if you’re busy just say no and stop taking stuff!” 

Salaries and bonuses are lockstep at Gibson, and our survey data showed that 79% of respondents agreed that bonus allocation is fair and transparent. “I’m happy with how it works here,” one junior shared with us. “The firm is pretty reliable on matching salary increases too. It’s never a question of if, just when.”   

Pro Bono 



Our interviewees painted a rosy picture of pro bono at Gibson. “There’s an emphasis on it here and everyone is pushed to do a least 20 hours a year,” one source noted. “It goes back to the free-market thing and having agency… I legitimately billed a third of my hours last year on pro bono and no one had an issue.” Another added: “It feels like they treat it the same as billable work. It’s part of the job!” This chimes with our survey data, which showed that 98% of respondents agreed that Gibson is committed to pro bono. 

“…more than 100 Gibson Dunn attorneys have been working to help over 300 clients safely resettle.” 

Sources we spoke with had worked on family separation cases, rewritten bylaws for nonprofit organizations, and taken on civil rights projects. Firm chair and managing partner Barbara Becker also pointed our attention to the firm’s efforts to help during the Afghan refugee crisis in 2021: “We have helped 300+ Afghans at risk of Taliban reprisals apply for humanitarian parole, have taken on dozens of asylum clients, and have co-founded the Welcome Legal Alliance, an initiative to bring together pro bono attorneys, nonprofit legal aid organizations, resettlement agencies, and other stakeholders to provide pro bono representation to Afghan refugees settling in the United States." She adds the firm has continued to “fight for racial justice and equity, including our work in combatting anti-Asian hate through the Alliance for Asian American Justice.” For more from Becker, click on the ‘Get Hired’ tab at the top of this page. 

Culture  



For a firm as big as Gibson, pinning down a universal culture can be hard. However, our sources were quick to praise the cultural dynamics at the firm, characterizing people as “down-to-earth and helpful,” as well as “thoughtful, personable folks who are family-oriented.” One interviewee identified a more casual strand to the culture and told us: “People treat each other as friends – they joke around and talk about weekend plans. It’s the kind of place where you feel like you want to support your fellow juniors.” 

“...the nature of the free-market system means we’re all self-starters.” 

The free-market system was also felt to shape life beyond just work allocation. “It causes more senior attorneys to treat junior attorneys with respect,” an interviewee reflected. “Because if they don’t, the junior attorneys can simply choose to not work with them in the future.” Another added that “the nature of the free-market system means we’re all self-starters. People are proactive, kind and considerate. It’s a collegial place and I like my co-workers.” Sources also claimed that “everyone is very accessible, even across offices. You never feel like a ‘satellite’ office.”  

Pro bono hours

  • For all (US) attorneys: undisclosed
  • Average per (US) attorney: undisclosed

Diversity, Equity & Inclusion 



Opinions on diversity at Gibson were largely positive. One source enthused: “I think our DE&I department is amazing and they take it very seriously. They are trying their best and recruitment-wise they are doing a good job.” Another highlighted “regular diversity programming, which they email around to promote that there will be a speaker on Zoom.” There's also a variety of affinity groups that operate at both a national and local level including a newly established Shabbat affinity group. Our data did show above-market results when it came to opportunities for mentorship from a diverse range of partners, and 76% of survey respondents agreed that there is diverse staffing on matters at the firm. “Even if things aren’t where they need to be, I would say they’re trying to do better and allocating resources,” one junior concluded. “The firm seems more proactive than not.” 

Get Hired



LATERAL RECRUITMENT: Find out more about lateral opportunities with Gibson Dunn here.

The first stage: recruitment on and off campus

OCI applicants interviewed: undisclosed

Gibson Dunn conducts OCIs at 26 law schools and accepts resume drops year-round. Hiring partner Perlette Michèle Jura tells us: "Our 'feeder schools' are exactly what you would expect – the Top 25 law schools provide the majority of our incoming summer and new associates, with Harvard, Chicago, Stanford, Georgetown, Penn, Virginia, NYU, Berkeley, and Yale being the top schools for summer 2020." The firm does recruit outside this group, "especially for offices located in the same cities as those schools."

The interviews themselves are conducted by a team of partners and associates, and Jura tells us us that they’re looking for candidates who display “strong critical thinking skills, have impeccable professional judgment, and exhibit a strong work ethic.” She also flags the firm’s free-market system, explaining that candidates need to seek out their own work. Associate sources agreed: “We want someone who has a go-getter type of attitude, but you also have to be personable and willing to take on work so people will want to work with you.” Another revealed: “When they’re recruiting at schools they’ll put on an initial screener in which you are – or are not – invited to a dinner. It’s two hours long and it’s essentially an extended second interview, after which the associates stay and talk about them for several hours.”

Top tips for this stage:

"Come into the interview prepared, show enthusiasm for legal issues and work, and exhibit a level of energy and conviction that signals to us that the candidate would thrive in our free-market system and ultimately contribute to the firm as a whole." – hiring partner Perlette Michèle Jura

Callbacks

Those invited back to GD’s callback stage will see firsthand the firm's appetite for socializing (and for dining). Callbacks consist of one-to-one interviews with a mix of partners and associates, followed by one or two meals with Gibson Dunn attorneys.

Jura explains: “These meals offer candidates another more informal setting to demonstrate why they would be successful at our firm and likewise gives our lawyers the opportunity to interact with the candidate in a less structured environment.” She adds that at this stage, “more questions might be asked about a candidate’s specific experiences or a candidate’s particular connection to and/or interest in the city in which their selected office is located.” Associates told us: “By the time their resume reaches my desk I’m confident they’re qualified, so from that point we’re looking for someone who’s going to perpetuate the Gibson Dunn culture and understand our work environment.”

Top tips for this stage:

"Researching Gibson Dunn interviewers with whom the candidate will be meeting as well as the firm generally and the select office ahead of time enables the candidate to offer specific questions and more relevant topics of conversation." – hiring partner Perlette Michèle Jura

Summer program

Offers: undisclosed

Acceptances: undisclosed

GD’s summer program, according to Jura, “is designed to help facilitate a smooth transition from law school to legal practice and provides training in areas such as legal writing, depositions and corporate transactions.” Summer associates can work with multiple partners and practice groups and get feedback on each assignment. They also get stuck in with pro bono matters, as well as a busy social calendar which ranges “from sporting events (a Mets baseball day in New York is a perennial inclusion) to small-group dinners at partners’ houses to legal networking events (like a tour of the Ninth Circuit courthouse in Pasadena, led by a Circuit Judge) to an annual diversity reception.” Jura tells us: “The vast majority of our summer associates return and join us as associates after they finish law school or, if applicable, their clerkship.”

Top tips for this stage:

"Summers should take every opportunity (whether in the office or at external events) to connect with as many of our attorneys as possible. Not only will this give them more exposure across their office, it also creates more opportunities to develop the mentoring relationships that are so essential to success in the law." – hiring partner Perlette Michèle Jura

And finally… 

An associate told us: “You have to be willing to make an effort on small projects and be collegial because you have to be pleasant to work with in a free-market system.”

Interview with Gibson Dunn's chair and managing partner, Barbara Becker



Have there been any developments at the firm over the past year that you would like our readers to know about?

It has been a pivotal year for the Firm.  We have always been, and continue to be, a firm that takes on the most critical issues of the day and partners with clients to achieve desired results.  Our continued success is enabled by our collaborative culture where we seamlessly work across offices and practice groups.  We have a Free Market staffing system that encourages our attorneys to take an active lead in their professional development.  Against the backdrop of this longstanding framework, the Firm marked significant milestones in 2021.  

After decades of distinguished service, Ken Doran and Chuck Woodhouse stepped down last year, and I was honored to be elected as Gibson Dunn’s seventh Chair & Managing Partner.  In addition, the Firm announced litigation partner Josh Lipshutz as Gibson Dunn’s first-ever Chief Operating Officer.  We benefit from the leadership of our partners, many of whom stepped into new positions as a Partner-in-Charge of an office, Practice Group chair or firmwide committee member.  This strong, diverse group will guide Gibson Dunn as we continue to evolve.

We are growing. The London transactional platform grew with the addition of a fantastic Private Equity M&A team.  Our Hong Kong office, likewise, welcomed a team of regulatory attorneys, building on the Firm’s prior practice expansions in Asia.  We also developed new Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) and Tax Controversy and Litigation groups, bolstered our Privacy, Cybersecurity and Data Innovation and Artificial Intelligence and Automated Systems practice groups, and expanded our work in the growing world of cryptocurrency. 

We have enhanced policies that support our attorneys in maintaining balanced lives.  One noteworthy highlight was the Firm’s policy and approach to remote work.  While our lawyers have always been granted substantial autonomy and flexibility, the pandemic has demonstrated that it is possible to do more to support remote work and actively facilitate this desired balance for our talent.  The Firm affirmatively extends to our attorneys the flexibility to work remotely when necessary as we realize this is critical to fueling full, well-rounded, happy lives.  The ability to structure our schedules in a way that is responsive to the needs of our clients and teams, as well as our essential personal and family priorities, is key to a vibrant and sustainable career.

We do not want anyone to miss out on the immense training, mentorship, and professional development benefits that come with being together in-person.  We learn and grow from working together and collaborating with team members.  This is especially true for our most junior attorneys and those who are new to the Firm, who must develop substantive legal skills and expertise, and also thrive in a variety of professional situations that cannot be replicated in other settings.  We offer robust mentoring and training programs, as well as opportunities to gather in a social setting, to support the professional development of our lawyers and to maintain our cherished Gibson Dunn community.  This is consistent with our culture, in which we hire the best and brightest and give them agency over how to shape their careers.

It has been, in short, a year marked by changes, and we are excited for our continued success and growth moving forward.  

How has it been taking the reins of the firm in the midst of the pandemic?

This continues to be a time of great uncertainty in the world which exacerbates the inherent challenges of managing any organization.  However, when such seismic shifts happen globally, we are given an opportunity to take stock of who we are, what we do, and how we do it.  Starting my tenure during the pandemic came with its inevitable uncertainties, but the freedom it afforded to apply lessons we’ve learned during COVID and remote working was a unique opportunity.  The Firm has a strong foundation – due in no small part to the leaders that came before me – and this is a dynamic opportunity to build on the Firm’s legacy and to chart our path forward.  

What is your firm's strategy and how do you expect the next year to unfold?

If there is anything the past two years have taught us, it is that we cannot predict everything – and our resiliency and ability to adapt continue to be among our greatest strengths.  Our strategy is, and always has been, to cultivate the best talent, tackle the most cutting-edge legal issues, and achieve excellent results for our clients.  We enjoy complexity and challenge, and strive to have a genuine impact on the world around us.  We know that these principles will continue to guide Gibson Dunn in 2022 and beyond, and I anticipate that great things lie ahead as a result.   

What are your core practice areas and sector focuses?

Gibson Dunn has very strong practices across all of our offices.  Our Litigation team continues to be a powerhouse and has achieved incredible results.  The strength of our Appellate group cannot be overlooked, our Investigations team is a global force, and our Labor and Employment and Antitrust teams had another banner year, securing key victories for our clients.

On the transactional side, Gibson Dunn attorneys continue to advise our clients on high-stakes matters.  Our Private Equity and Finance teams are terrific, and the Private Equity team, in particular, has grown in the past several months.  Our Real Estate group handles some of the most complicated transactions around the globe.  And the members of our world-class Securities Regulation and Corporate Governance practice – the success of which laid the groundwork for the Firm’s new ESG group – serve as trusted advisors in the field, including by staying ahead of and guiding our clients through new and emerging disclosure requirements.

There are, of course, cycles in the legal landscape or world events that might bring one existing practice or another to the forefront in any given year.  During the pandemic, we mobilized several groups to counsel our clients on timely and critical questions on COVID restrictions, pandemic-related legal and operational challenges, among other issues.  Our exceptional Business Restructuring and Reorganization team, for example, has worked tirelessly to advise clients in navigating the past two years.  Similarly, our Pro Bono practice is evolving to meet global needs, and this year, we got involved in the Afghan refugee crisis right from the beginning – to date, we have helped 300+ Afghans at risk of Taliban reprisals apply for humanitarian parole, have taken on dozens of asylum clients, and have co-founded the Welcome Legal Alliance, an initiative to bring together pro bono attorneys, nonprofit legal aid organizations, resettlement agencies, and other stakeholders to provide pro bono representation to Afghan refugees settling in the United States.  We also advised small businesses who face challenges due to the pandemic, and continued our work as a leader in the fight for racial justice and equity, including our work in combating anti-Asian hate through the Alliance for Asian American Justice.

We are growing and changing, critically analyzing and anticipating our clients’ current and future needs.  As evidenced by the past two years, we cannot predict the future but regardless of what may be ahead, I am confident that our superb attorneys are ready and able to meet the challenge. 

How has the global pandemic affected the firm?

The pandemic has impacted people around the globe, and we are no exception.  Many in our community felt the health effects of COVID firsthand, or had friends or family members that were deeply impacted by the pandemic.  Against this challenging background, I have been inspired by the ways our Firm pulled together.  We saw into one another’s lives during Zoom calls, we found ways to collaborate while working remotely, and, together, we created approaches to new legal and logistical questions.  The way we conduct our work will never be quite the same, and nor should it.  Flexibility in where and how we work can be a real asset.

How would you define your firm's place in the legal market?

I do not think it is an exaggeration to say that Gibson Dunn is an elite law firm, with top-notch litigation and transactional practices.  We are defined by a culture of collaboration, the pursuit of excellence, and a deep recognition for the meaningful impact our work has, all of which contribute to our reputation as a top global firm.  This has enabled us to consistently attract brilliant attorneys and to innovate, both in how we address particular matters or questions and, more broadly, in how we develop our practices.  I believe we are poised to continue this trajectory as leaders in the legal market.

What are the most significant trends in the legal market that you feel students should know about?

The impact of technology cannot be overstated, especially in light of the past two years of remote working (and studying for law students) throughout the pandemic.  As technology is deployed in new ways, new issues and vulnerabilities arise that require legal expertise.  Not only are we adapting the latest technology for our own internal use, but we also are assessing how best to protect and advise our clients. 

Perhaps as a combination of a trend and a constant, I believe that sound corporate governance never goes out of style.  The last few years put a new focus on business leaders to understand the environmental and sustainability aspects of their business, on top of governance.  This type of work is one of our core capabilities.

What advice do you have for students and junior associates who are just about to embark/have just embarked on their legal career?

Seize opportunities to get involved and seek out mentors!  Getting involved in your communities and in recruiting, diversity and training efforts, as well as committees at your firm may seem like an unnecessary extracurricular, but firm citizenry is incredibly important.  It leads to opportunities you may not have otherwise had.  It will give you a sense of purpose, round out your legal experience, and introduce you to perspectives and insights from those around you.  And when you see people who you admire and are doing work you are interested in, reach out and talk to them.  Mentors are an invaluable resource as you navigate your career.

Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP

333 South Grand Avenue,
Los Angeles,
CA 90071-3197
Website www.gibsondunn.com

  • Head office: Los Angeles, CA
  • Number of domestic offices: 10
  • Number of international offices: 10
  • Worldwide revenue: $2,160,542,000
  • Partners (US): 336
  • Associates (US): 783
  • Contacts 
  • Main recruitment contact: John O’Hara, Chief Recruiting Officer (JOHara@gibsondunn.com)
  • Hiring partner: Perlette Michèle Jura
  • Diversity officer: Zakiyyah Salim-Williams
  • Recruitment details 
  • Entry-level associates starting in 2022: 156
  • Clerking policy: Yes
  • Summers joining/anticipated 2022: 1Ls: 22, 2Ls: 191
  • Summers joining/anticipated 2022 split by office: Dallas: 13, Denver: 5, Houston: 13, Los Angeles: 54, New York: 48, Orange County: 12, Palo Alto: 11, San Francisco: 14, Washington, DC: 48 
  • Summer salary 2022: 1Ls: $4,134.62/week, 2Ls: $4,134.62/week
  • Split summers offered? Yes
  • Can summers spend time in an overseas office? No

Main areas of work
Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher is renowned for both its litigation and transactional work. Major practice groups include antitrust, artificial intelligence, betting and gaming, capital markets, class actions, environmental, electronic discovery, information technology, intellectual property, labor & employment, media and entertainment, mergers and acquisitions, privacy, cybersecurity, consumer protection, securities, transnational litigation, and white collar defense. The firm is especially known for its appellate work, particularly in the US Supreme Court.

Firm profile
Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher is a full-service global law firm, with over 1,600 lawyers in 20 offices worldwide, including ten offices in major cities throughout the United States and over 300 lawyers in their London, Paris, Munich, Beijing, Brussels, Dubai, Frankfurt, Hong Kong, Singapore and São Paulo offices. The firm is recognized for excellent legal service and its lawyers routinely represent clients in some of the most high-profile litigation matters and complex transactions in the world.

Recruitment
Law Schools attended for OCIs in 2021:
Berkeley, Cardozo, Chicago, Colorado, Columbia, Cornell, Duke, Fordham, George Washington, Georgetown, Harvard, Houston, Howard, Irvine, Loyola, Michigan, NYU, Pennsylvania, Pepperdine, San Diego, SMU, Stanford, Texas, UCLA, USC, Vanderbilt, Virginia, Yale, and we participated in non-OCI formal interview programs at many more schools.

Recruitment outside OCIs:
The firm accepts applications from students and graduates from all law schools and not solely from those listed above. We also participate in the Lavender Law Fair, NYU ISIP and Columbia Overseas-Trained L.L.M. Interview Program, and Loyola Patent Interview Program.

Summer associate profile: Gibson Dunn’s summer program is the primary means through which new lawyers become a part of our firm. Each summer, Gibson Dunn brings together approximately 180+ of the most accomplished, ambitious, and personable students from the top law schools across the nation, providing them with real involvement in the high quality legal work that our firm does every day. Summer associates are involved directly in the firm’s representation of its clients, maximizing their exposure to the practical aspects of lawyering. In addition to interesting client work and substantive training programs, the summer program includes many unique social activities that give summer associates the chance to make lasting connections with each other and the lawyers of the firm.

Summer program components: The firm provides significant and substantive training to its select group of summer associates. Each summer associate receives detailed feedback on the projects that they perform plus numerous formal training programs. This is all within the context of a program filled with fun social events that are designed to connect summer associates with current attorneys, mentors, and the cities in which Gibson Dunn has offices.

Social media:
Recruitment website: www.gibsondunn.com
LinkedIn: Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP
Facebook: GibsonDunnCareers
Instagram: gibsondunnandcrutcher

This Firm's Rankings in
USA Guide, 2022

Ranked Departments

    • Antitrust (Band 1)
    • Banking & Finance (Band 2)
    • Bankruptcy/Restructuring (Band 2)
    • Capital Markets: Debt & Equity (Band 3)
    • Corporate/M&A: Private Equity: The Elite (Band 3)
    • Environment (Band 2)
    • Insurance: Insurer (Band 2)
    • Intellectual Property: Patent Litigation (Band 3)
    • Labor & Employment: The Elite (Band 1)
    • Life Sciences (Band 4)
    • Litigation: Appellate (Band 1)
    • Litigation: General Commercial: The Elite (Band 1)
    • Litigation: Securities (Band 1)
    • Litigation: White-Collar Crime & Government Investigations (Band 1)
    • Media & Entertainment: Litigation (Band 2)
    • Media & Entertainment: Transactional (Band 3)
    • Real Estate: Zoning/Land Use (Band 1)
    • Technology: Outsourcing (Band 1)
    • Corporate/M&A: The Elite (Band 2)
    • Employee Benefits & Executive Compensation (Band 2)
    • Real Estate (Band 1)
    • Corporate/M&A: The Elite (Band 3)
    • Employee Benefits & Executive Compensation (Band 2)
    • Real Estate (Band 1)
    • Tax (Band 2)
    • Corporate/M&A (Band 2)
    • Energy & Natural Resources (Band 1)
    • Litigation: General Commercial (Band 3)
    • Litigation: White-Collar Crime & Government Investigations (Band 1)
    • Antitrust (Band 2)
    • Corporate/M&A & Private Equity (Band 1)
    • Employee Benefits & Executive Compensation (Band 4)
    • Environment (Band 3)
    • Intellectual Property: Litigation (Band 5)
    • Labor & Employment (Band 1)
    • Litigation: General Commercial: The Elite (Band 1)
    • Litigation: Securities (Band 1)
    • Litigation: White-Collar Crime & Government Investigations (Band 1)
    • Antitrust (Band 5)
    • Banking & Finance (Band 4)
    • Bankruptcy/Restructuring: The Elite (Band 3)
    • Corporate/M&A: Takeover Defense (Band 2)
    • Corporate/M&A: The Elite (Band 4)
    • Intellectual Property: Patent (Band 2)
    • Litigation: General Commercial: The Elite (Band 1)
    • Litigation: Securities (Band 2)
    • Litigation: White-Collar Crime & Government Investigations: The Elite (Band 1)
    • Media & Entertainment: Corporate (Band 4)
    • Media & Entertainment: Litigation (Band 2)
    • Outsourcing (Band 1)
    • Real Estate: Mainly Corporate & Finance (Band 1)
    • Real Estate: Mainly Dirt (Band 2)
    • Tax (Band 2)
    • Antitrust (Band 1)
    • Capital Markets: Debt & Equity (Band 2)
    • Corporate/M&A: The Elite (Band 2)
    • Intellectual Property (Band 4)
    • Litigation: Appellate (Band 3)
    • Tax (Band 4)
    • Litigation: General Commercial (Band 2)
    • Antitrust (Band 1)
    • Antitrust: Cartel (Band 1)
    • Appellate Law (Band 1)
    • Banking & Finance (Band 4)
    • Bankruptcy/Restructuring: The Elite (Band 4)
    • Capital Markets: Investment Grade Debt: Issuer Counsel (Band 3)
    • Climate Change (Band 3)
    • Corporate Crime & Investigations: The Elite (Band 1)
    • Corporate/M&A: The Elite (Band 3)
    • Employee Benefits & Executive Compensation (Band 4)
    • Energy: Electricity (Regulatory & Litigation) (Band 4)
    • Energy: Electricity (Transactional) (Band 2)
    • Energy: Oil & Gas (Transactional) (Band 2)
    • Environment (Band 3)
    • False Claims Act (Band 1)
    • FCPA (Band 1)
    • Financial Services Regulation: Banking (Enforcement & Investigations) (Band 3)
    • Government Contracts: The Elite (Band 3)
    • Intellectual Property (Band 2)
    • International Arbitration: Enforcement Spotlight Table
    • International Arbitration: Highly Regarded (Band 1)
    • International Trade: Export Controls & Economic Sanctions: The Elite (Band 3)
    • Labor & Employment (Band 2)
    • Leisure & Hospitality (Band 2)
    • Life Sciences (Band 4)
    • Outsourcing (Band 1)
    • Privacy & Data Security: Litigation (Band 1)
    • Privacy & Data Security: The Elite (Band 4)
    • Private Equity: Buyouts: Mid-Market (Band 2)
    • Private Equity: Fund Formation (Band 3)
    • Product Liability & Mass Torts: Highly Regarded (Band 2)
    • Product Liability: Consumer Class Actions (Band 1)
    • Projects: PPP (Band 1)
    • Real Estate (Band 1)
    • Retail (Band 3)
    • Retail: Corporate & Transactional (Band 2)
    • Securities: Litigation (Band 1)
    • Securities: Regulation: Advisory (Band 1)
    • Securities: Regulation: Enforcement (Band 1)
    • Sports Law (Band 4)
    • Tax: Controversy (Band 5)
    • Tax: Corporate & Finance (Band 2)
    • Transportation: Rail (for Railroads) (Band 2)
    • Transportation: Road (Automotive) (Band 3)